Charlottesville Breaking News

FunStuff: Charlottesville events March 8 and beyond

Pinter Fest
There's something irresistible about seeing the edginess of Nobel Prize-winning English playwright Harold Pinter performed in the warmth of an Afton-area theater named for The Waltons creator Earl Hamner. Local theater maven Boomie Pedersen directs A Slight Ache, which was written in 1958. Head to Nelson while it's still light and have dinner at a local brewery, like the nearby Blue Mountain.
March 8, 9, 10, 7:30pm; March 11, 2pm, Hamner Theater, $15


A Slave in the White House
Not everyone was enthralled with Dolley Madison; and her former slave, Paul Jennings, was one with misgivings, according to his own memoir of working for President James Madison. Barboursville author Elizabeth Dowling Taylor, who has worked at both Monticello and Mon...

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30 arrests: Ultrasound protest brings riot police to Capitol

A grassroots protest of a controversial women's health care bill recently approved by the state Senate brought hundreds to the state Capitol grounds in Richmond March 3 and ended with the arrest of 30 people on the Capitol steps.

"This is like Star Wars," said one attendee of the black-clad, shield-carrying  Virginia State Police officers, who lined up to keep people away from the building that houses Virginia's General Assembly.

The demonstration was in response to a bill that originally required a transvaginal ultrasound for women seeking abortions– and which quickly became a national controversy and target of derision among satirists including Saturday Night Live.

After Governor Bob McDonnell signaled his discomfort, House Bill 462 was modified to require a less-invasive abdominal ultrasound and passed the Senate this week and awaits McDonnell's signature.

Supporters say the measure helps women make a more informed decision; opponents say the ultrasounds are medically ineffective, a thinly-veiled attempt to thwart a woman from obtaining an abortion.

Organizers from a group called Speak Loudly with Silence, which led an estimated 1,200 women in silent protest on the Capitol grounds nearly two weeks earlier, estimated the crowd of Saturday's attendees at 900.

"This is a diverse group- they're not from any one political group," said organizer Molly Vick. "I think [the General Assembly] went so extreme, they brou...

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Huguely's violence: UVA victim wants emphasis off alcohol

Although the 26-year sentence recommended for convicted murderer George Huguely may be winning acclaim, other aspects of the recent trial have dismayed a high-profile victim of violence at UVA, and she's speaking out about it.

In Commonwealth v. Beebe, Liz Seccuro pressed charges after one of the men who allegedly raped h...

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Unsatisfied: Hunger strike ends with mixed messages

After a hunger strike lasting up to 13 days and following a statement from UVA administration declining to raise the minimum wage at UVA to $13 an hour, activists for the Living Wage Campaign at UVA suspended the strike on March 1– but they're declaring victory nonetheless.

"The administration was forced to acknowledge this Campaign," says former hunger striker Tim Bruno, "and, more importantly, the crisis of low wages and the invisibility of contract workers on our campus."

A grad student who went 11 days without eating, Bruno points to national media attention and University-wide emails sent by President Teresa Sullivan and V-P Michael Strine as evidence of impact.

"We have engaged the UVA student body in an unprecedented way," Bruno notes in an email to a reporter. "We have educated it in an unprecedented way."

A statement on the website of the Living Wage Campaign promises a coming escalation: "To this administration, which has so far failed to provide moral leadership to our University, we have only this to say: get ready, because we are already here. We will hold you accountable for your promises."

UVA laid down its position on February 29 in a statement by Stri...

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Cuccinelli kibbosh: Supreme Court denies Mann demand

The Virginia Supreme Court rejects Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's demand for UVA to turn over records relating to climate scientist Michael Mann's work. The Roanoke Times has the story.

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